Barra Nova, Brazil – Zero Waste swaps 

We left Parajuru October 21st, performed a well-needed beach clean-up and headed to Barra Nova — another fisherman’s village up the coast.

Beach clean-up
Barra Nova, kitesurfing paradise and fisherman village

Our time here has been very enjoyable as we’ve continued to discover ways to limit our plastic consumption. Indeed, the Zero Waste Voyage is not just an excuse to travel around the world, it’s an exploratory voyage to discover ways to limit single-use plastic while we’re on the go.


Nearly zero waste fridge
Easy swaps:

WATER 💦. As you can imagine, we can’t drink tap water in Brazil. We brought a water filter but since we found out that the water contains a lot of metal (rust) we didn’t want to clog it up so we went for an easy alternative – 20L bottles that you can trade in for full bottles for 5R (<$1) . We take turns doing water runs and we’re able to stay well hydrated.

CONDIMENTS 🌶. These are virtually impossible to find plastic-free. While it’s OK to live without rosemary, paprica, cumin oregano…  I can’t do without salt and pepper and I enjoy some curry from time to time! Luckily for us, we found fresh local basil, coriander and mint to spice up our dishes or make tea.

Swap sugar for a block of unrefined cane sugar

VEGGIES & STARCH 🍆.Veggies are easy to find package-free in markets. There isn’t however, a huge selection of starches to choose from. We’ve been eating a lot of potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash and avocadoes.

Fresh from the market
PROTEIN 🐟. I’m not a vegetarian —I need animal or fish protein from time to time to feel satiated. I do however, like to get these products locally and from sustainable sources. Since we’ve been lucky enough to frequent two villages that rely on the traditional fishing economies we have been eating a decent amount of local, fresh fish. In Parajuru (our previous  location), sometimes we treated ourselves to barbecued chicken from street vendors.

Traditional fishing nets.

There are however, some foods (beans, flours etc.) that inevitably come packaged up. In this case, the second ‘zero waste’ rule is to limit ourselves to local ingredients. This may seem daunting at first, but can quickly become a game if you cook with friends and make it a group challenge.


Local Ingredients. We made green banana flour bread to replace store bought bread

Black bean pesto
Chia pot with fruits
Brazilian take on quiche- crust made with manioc (cassava) flour – a local staple
A few more photos

Traditional fishing boat.

Top Left: the boys and their beers. Top Right: our friend Hugo . Bottom Right: The team. Bottom Left: Can you spot the kale ?!!

The spot

Bother – sister Gap year – B R A Z I L

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